Sunday, August 5, 2012

Ejection 107: Sam Holbrook (5)

1B Umpire Sam Holbrook ejected Tigers catcher Gerald Laird for arguing an out call in the bottom of the 2nd inning of the Indians-Tigers game. With one out and one on, Laird hit a 0-1 fastball from Indians pitcher Chris Seddon for a soft ground ball, Seddon arriving at first base as Laird approached. Replays indicate Seddon's attempted tag of Laird's foot did not occur prior to Laird's hand touching the base, the call was incorrect.* At the time of the ejection, the Indians were leading, 2-1. The Tigers ultimately won the contest, 10-8, in 10 innings.

This is Sam Holbrook (34)'s 5th ejection of 2012.
Sam Holbrook now has 14 points in the UEFL (16 Previous + 2 MLB + -4 Incorrect Call = 14).
Crew Chief Joe West now has 4 points in the Crew Division (4 Previous + 0 Incorrect Call = 4).
*Quality of Correctness has been affirmed in a 4-0 decision by the UEFL Appeals Board.

UEFL Standings Update

This is the 107th ejection of 2012.
This is the 43rd player ejection of 2012.
This is the Tigers' 8th ejection of 2012, T-1st MLB (LAD), 1st AL Central (DET 8; KC 6; CLE, CWS 5, MIN 4).
This is Gerald Laird's first ejection since July 4, 2010 (CB Bucknor; QOC = Incorrect).
This is Sam Holbrook's first ejection since July 7 (Zack Greinke, Ron Roenicke; QOC = Correct).

Wrap: Indians at Tigers, 8/5/12
Video: Laird slides head first in an attempt to avoid tag, is ruled out and later ejected from dugout

39 comments :

Anonymous said...

Same thing, different day. Umpire makes a horrible call and the pro-wannabe apologists come out and make excuses.

This is exactly why we need instant replay. The emphasis in baseball should be to GET IT RIGHT. Not speed, not 'what's easy', not about 'preserving the human element', but on getting it right. Every time.

There's no valid excuse for what happened here: the umpire completely botched this call. That level of incompetence is a disgrace to the sport.

UmpsRule said...

Uh, I haven't seen anyone making excuses. In fact, your comment is the first on this post. Furthermore, the play was actually quite close, it wasn't nearly as obvious as you are making it sound. You have a lot of gall calling others incompetent.

Anonymous said...

Although the call was ultimately incorrect, it was an unconventional play with the runner diving head first into first base. It was a close call as Seddon appeared to just miss the initial tag attempt before Laird reached first.

Watching it live from the Indians feed it was tough to tell how much Laird argued and when Holbrook eventually ejected him, it will be interesting to see as it didn't appear to happen until after Laird was back in the dug out.

Anonymous said...

"Uh, I haven't seen anyone making excuses."

Um... thanks for proving my point: this botched call is just like all of the others in that the apologist will come out and make excuses. Like you just did.

Anonymous said...

"B-b-but it was a close play!"

Get it right or go home. The robot replacements can't come soon enough.

UmpsRule said...

"Um... thanks for proving my point: this botched call is just like all of the others in that the apologist will come out and make excuses."

Aside from the fact that I didn't prove your point at all, this call is also like all of the others in that the ump-blasters will come out and take ridiculously hyperbolic and inflammatory shots at the umps, bending the truth to fit their arguments.

BAPACop said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
BAPACop said...

@Anon 11:51,11:54: The best hitters in the game succeed only 34% of the time. There's no valid excuse for that, and that level of incompetence is a disgrace to the sport.

Anonymous said...

You absolutely proved my point and you continue to do so. It's also fitting, that as the unofficial chairman of the umpire apologists on this site, you were the one to get the ball rolling on this one.

Anonymous said...

Enter BAPACop with the tired straw-man comparison of umpire and player performance. Yawn.

UmpsRule said...

Also, I agree that Holbrook blew the call. However, at first I thought he was right, and I'm a die-hard Tigers fan. I think the ejection of Laird was likely not justified and I was not at all pleased with West for his handling of the situation. If I was the Tigers manager, I probably would have gotten heaved by Holbrook, because I would have been letting him hear it for ejecting Laird for no apparent reason. I was not planning to be overly defensive of either ump here, but the trouble-making anon is certainly willing to be overly aggressive with his insane expectation that every call will be right. Maybe it's time for robot commenters.

UmpsRule said...

I'd be very interested to know what I said that proved your point. I'd also like to know why I am the unofficial chairman of umpire apologists. Do you feel like supporting your claims or not?

BAPACop said...

@Anon 12:01: A straw-man requires me to have claimed to refute your position by replacing it with one you never had. I never claimed I refuted your opinion. I merely presented an opinion of my own.

Anonymous said...

Baseball needs a three-umpire panel in the booth reviewing every close play. Each umpire would review the play, if needed, and safe and out calls would be determined by at least a 2/3 vote. The ruling would be quickly displayed on a scoreboard panel visible to the players/spectators.

Balls/strikes should be automatically called by Brooks Baseball.

Before you knock the plan, ask yourself: would there be fewer mistakes than the current system?

UmpsRule said...

I'm not going to say it's a bad plan necessarily, but I highly doubt it will happen anytime soon.

BAPACop said...

@UmpsRule: You proved his point by providing a theoretical reason why the umpire may have missed the call instead of saying the umpires should get it right every time no matter what.

Personally, I feel the same way when I'm watching a game and the announcers explain that the batter struck out because of the pitcher's fantastic changeup. Silly apologists, the player should be getting a hit every at bat!

UmpsRule said...

Yes, I figured that was what he was referring to, meaning he never had anything. I proved his point by using common sense to refute nonsense. I should have known better.

Anonymous said...

And as soon as you take away those major league jobs, you no longer have quality umpiring in the minors, division 1 on down at the college level, or even high school.

Plus, who would the players, managers and fans blame for poor performance? Surely, not themselves. Someone has to be the bad guy....

UmpsRule said...

@ Anon 12:38

Great points. Also, what about interference calls, calling balks, issuing warnings or breaking up fights? Can a robot do that?

SJR said...

@11:51/11:54 And you've just proven a point to me: that you've never umpired a game of baseball. You're only adamant that he got the call wrong not WHY he got the call wrong. Was it poor positioning, quick timing, improper use of the eyes? And if you're going to lump me in with the apologists, I will lump you in with the trolls. Have a nice day.

Anonymous said...

If the umpires are not allowed to be human and make "errors" then the same must be said for the players. For those of us that read this post because we want to be better umpires we are tired of reading all of the umpire bashing, if your not going to make for a valued debate to the board, go somewhere else.

Curt Crowley said...

11:40, I'm no apologist, but you are an idiot. Some calls are closer than others, and each must be evaluated on its own merits.

Pissing and moaning about bad calls is silly. I'm more critical of umpires than many on this site, but I seldom criticize over a missed call. Why? Because s--t happens, and those who expect perfection for officials in any sport are fools.

Also, if you can't divorce the missed call from the umpire's decision to eject and post-ejection conduct, then you shouldn't be commenting about such matters. In many cases, an umpire may obviously make the wrong call, but at the same time be completely justified in making an ejection and absolutely flawless in his post-ejection conduct.

It ain't always black-and-white, junior.

Mike said...

BAPACOP, your reasoning about "hitters are only successful 34%" is a bunch of blah, blah, blah.

A hitter has a whole team trying to get him out! There is nobody out there trying to defeat the umpires!

Anonymous said...

That is, of course, if you assume that no one is trying to cheat or gain an advantage over their opponent.

But, right, other than that...

BAPACop said...

@Mike: Wow. Good job totally missing the point. I'll spell it out for you:

I am not actually comparing the performance rates between umpires and players. I never at any point actively compared them. Rather, I posted that (and the following comment about striking out because of changeups) in an attempt to get the people who throw the word "apologist" around willy-nilly to realize how stupid it is to call any attempt to explain why a call was missed as an "apology".

You have actually reinforced my point here. You see, I am aware that a batter has an entire team trying to get him out. Thus, when he is put out, there is a REASON for it. The same is true for umpires. When they miss a call, there is a REASON. Noting that reason is not an "apology".

omgahokie said...

http://mlb.mlb.com/video/play.jsp?content_id=23642939&c_id=mlb

Anonymous said...

Laird must have continued arguing, or spiked his equipment, or something, because I am pretty sure Sam Holbrook knows you can't eject someone for no reason. His explanation was enough to satisfy Jim Leyland, so I'm sure the ejection was warranted.

Based off of the video provided by MLB, I'm not entirely certain the call was incorrect. That video is inconclusive if you ask me. Does anybody have a different angle available?

kickersrule said...

Challenge

He was taged before he got to the bag.

Russ said...

The Indians angle actually puts more doubt to the call being incorrect. It shows that Laird was in fact tagged on the shoulder after Seddon missed him initially. However, I cannot tell if he was already at first or not. I would not categorize this as a blown call, maybe a missed call, but not a blown one. I am getting a little tired of Sam Holbrook dugout watching/listening. 3 of his 5 ejections have been from someone in the dugout and all of them seemed uncalled for (see Scioscia ejection on 5/9). Also 3 of his 4 ejections last year were from the dugout. It just looks bad to constantly be dugout listening. Focus on the game. One thing I will say is Holbrook's demeanor during all of these arguments is excellent. He never yells and is always willing to calmly explain something to the player/Manager. He didn't really get a chance to on this one, but you could tell he would've been fine talking to Laird. It is also possible Laird said something stupid, he has been know to be kind of a hothead and is usually good for 1 ejection per year so it wouldn't surprise me if he did something stupid. I just wish Sam would have a little thicker skin becuase he is such a good Umpire. I am starting to like him less and less because of these type of ejections. If if it was a one time thing I wouldn't be putting up a fuss, but this is becoming a reccuring theme for him.

Gil Imber said...

This ruling has been challenged and is under review by the UEFL Appeals Board.

Anonymous said...

He is tagged in the shoulder before he gets to first. Indians Feed shows he gets him in the shoulder. The tigers feed looks like he missed the tag but clearly shows he was short of the bag. Any way you can sync up the feeds?

Anonymous said...

There should be a rule that a challenge from the owner of the umpire must be seconded.

Russ said...

That would be a good rule because there have been a ton of frivolous challenges this season. However, this is not one of them. Based on the replays I have seen (Clev and Det broadcasts)the call is close enough there is good chance it could be changed to at least inconclusive.

kickersrule said...

There should also be a rule that you have to be in the league to be able to challenge. Id say that should matter a little more.

SteveJ said...

How was it determined that the first base umpire ejected Laird?

I thought Country Joe West, the home plate umpire, ejected Laird and then Leyland.

Leyland went out to first base to confirm that the 1st base umpire didn't do anything.

He then went to Country Joe to ask why Country Joe needed to get involved at all.

Russ said...

It was Holbrook who ejected Laird. This is not apparent in the video, but I watched both feeds on MLB.TV and you can see as Seddon is about to deliver the pitch, Joe West is ready in his stance and then time is called not by West. West removes his mask slowly and does not even look in the direction of Laird. Then he most likely sees Holbrook give an ejection signal and you can actually see Joe mouth very quietly "who?" in the direction of Holbrook. I am 100% positive Holbrook did the ejecting.

Anonymous said...

Or you could just check the box score.

Gil Imber said...

After review, the Original Ruling has been affirmed in a unanimous 4-0 decision by the UEFL Appeals Board. Four Appeals Board members voted to confirm Quality of Correctness.

Majority Opinion, tmac:
after review I am confirming the call as replays indiccate the tag occurred on the left buttocks after an inital miss.

Concurring Opinion, Albertaumpire:
After reviewing the play 15 times...I got the right angle to look at and i too agree. Confirm.

Therefore, the Board affirms the Original Ruling.

Confirmed: Jeremy, tmac, Albertaumpire, RichMSN
Upheld: None
Overturned: None
Deferred: None
Abstained: Gil (Posted Original Ruling), BillMueller, yawetag (owns -cc West)

Quality of Correctness has been affirmed, 4-0.

Anonymous said...

I think any appeal review containing the word "buttocks" is funny. Juvenile.

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